Can Global Emissions Really Be Reduced?
With delegates, energy/environment ministers, business representatives and NGO leaders now in Durban for COP17, attention again turns to the pressing issue of actually reducing global emissions. The current UNFCCC conference comes against the backdrop of two grim statistics of recent weeks — the record year-on-year (2009 to 2010) jump in global emissions just announced by the U.S. Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center (CDIAC) and the prospect of an early “lock-in” of a minimum 2°C (3.6°F ) temperature rise this century, as indicated by the International Energy Agency in mid November.
As society grapples with these issues, the merit of various technologies and emission reduction approaches arises. Some advocate for a rapid switch to